The O’Shea Family, have been farming on the banks of the River Suir for nearly 200 years. They see themselves as custodians of the land for the next generation. They are the main supplier of potatoes and carrots to Iverk Produce, a sister company.
Efficient farming practices and economies of scale have ensured that potatoes and carrots can be produced for the consumer at an affordable cost. Investment in five fridges, that store 12-13,000 tonnes of potatoes ensures an all-year-round supply of best quality potatoes to retailers. High quality standards are maintained throughout the production process, while strict quality protocols ensure that the food preparation standards are fully compliant with Bord Bia, BRC and HACCP. O’Shea Farms are verified members of Bord Bia Origin Green, the worlds’ only national food and drink sustainability programme.
O’Shea’s are also the founders of Iverk Produce, which is one of the largest suppliers of fresh fruit and vegetables in Ireland. From their base in Piltown, Co. Kilkenny, they deliver daily to retail outlets and food manufacturers across Ireland. Together with over 50 local growing partners, they take great pride in continuing that time-honoured tradition of harvesting and selecting the best of nature’s produce and deliver it to their customers fresh, every day. They are closely aligned with Total Produce – Europe’s largest fresh produce provider, and Meadowfresh Foods – a major supplier of prepared vegetables.
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O’Shea’s have also taken several initiatives to reduce their environmental impact and improve energy efficiency, including the installation of a large electrical PV installation. They continue to seek innovative and energy efficient solutions for managing their fresh produce.
Electricity storage capacity to support the 250 kW solar photovoltaic (PV) installation for cold storage and a further 414 kW PV which is to be installed. O’Shea’s Farm PV project generates 11% of the total site electricity and operates a direct feed of the entire PV production to the refrigerator units. This helps protect the fresh vegetable produce throughout the summer months. This renewable electricity generation matches precisely the load demand profile of the refrigeration system. Currently, there is no storage technology installed on the site.
About the Storage Challenge
O’Shea’s farm is planning to store solar PV generated electricity in batteries and to use it on site, or to export this to the grid at price-optimal points.